Role details

URN 582 – Coal Authority (NED X 2)

Application deadline 22 August 2022


Coal Authority
Sponsor department
Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
East Midlands
Major Projects
Number of vacancies
Time commitment
3 day(s) per month
£11666 per annum
Length of term
3 years
Application deadline
11pm on 22 August 2022

Timeline for this appointment

  1. Opening date

    28 June 2022

  2. Application deadline

    11pm on 22 August 2022

These dates are indicative and may be subject to change

Person specification

Essential criteria

Candidates should demonstrate in their application how they meet the following essential criteria:​
  • Leadership experience which will enable the successful candidate to provide constructive challenge and to support, coach and mentor the executive. 
  • An interest in developing experience at Board level and some understanding of corporate governance and developing organisational strategy.​
  • Good judgement and a willingness to make decisions. ​
  • Skills, knowledge, and experience in at least one of the following: Operational Delivery, Customer and Community Engagement, Climate Change and Nature Resilience/Recovery, Innovation or Research and Development. One NED will need experience of operating in Wales and engaging with Welsh Government and stakeholders. ​
  • A demonstrable commitment to equality, diversity, and inclusion.

Role description


The Coal Authority is an Executive Non-Departmental Public Body that has an independent Chair and Board. It is responsible to the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).​
Approximately 350 staff are employed to deliver the key statutory functions that protect the public and the environment from the legacy of coal mining in Great Britain. 
This translates into repairing subsidence damage to properties, making safe any ground collapses and treating contaminated water discharges from historic coal mines. The Coal Authority carries a huge amount of financial, safety and environmental risk on behalf of the Department.

Introduction from the Secretary of State

Dear Candidate, 
Thank you for your interest in the roles of Non- Executive Director of the Coal Authority. 
You may already have some idea about the important work of the Coal Authority and this pack will tell you more about the purpose and the nature of the role. 
The Coal Authority works across Great Britain to protect the public, drinking water and the environment in coal mining areas and to seek opportunity from our coal mining legacy as well as manage the liabilities. Their mission is to make a better future for people and the environment in mining areas.
They are an operational delivery body and operate a 24/7 incident response as well as managing the effects of past coal mining, the Coal Authority uses its information and expertise to help people make informed decisions, support the housing market, and provide skilled services to other parts of government and on a commercial basis. The organisation is working to make a significant contribution to delivering government policy on net-zero carbon. Their innovative approach to decarbonising heat using mine water and mine assets is one example of this.
As a Non-Executive Director, you will provide guidance for the Coal Authority, as it continues to provide safe and responsible management of our coal legacy but also be a leader who can help the organisation continue to innovate and deliver value across Great Britain for future generations.
If you believe you have the experience and qualities to help lead the Coal Authority, then we very much look forward to hearing from you.   
We welcome applications from individuals of all backgrounds, including those from under-represented groups.  
Rt Hon Greg Hands MP
Minister for Minister for Energy, Clean Growth and Climate Change 

Role description

We are recruiting for two Non-Executive Director roles at this time and the key responsibilities are: ​
  • To provide independent challenge, advice and support to the Non-Executive Chair and Executive through attendance at Board and sub-committee meetings. ​
  • To support the Executive team in its leadership of the organisation and assist the Chief Executive to develop the organisation’s capacity and capabilities to meet its future challenges and responsibilities. ​
  • To provide independent and objective guidance to the Board and Executive team on business development and ensure that the Board maintains compliance with the ‘Corporate governance in central government departments: Code of good practice’, and that personal compliance with the ‘Code of Conduct for Board Members of Public Bodies’ is maintained.​​
  • One of the roles will Chair the Health, Safety and Well being Committee and the other will Chair the Sustainability Committee.​​
  • In addition, one of the roles will be the lead member for the Coal Authority’s activities in Wales and will need to have experience of operating in Wales and engaging with Welsh Government and stakeholders.​
  • You will support the Executive team in its leadership of the organisation and assist the Chief Executive to develop the organisation’s capacity and capabilities to meet its future challenges and responsibilities. ​
  • You will also provide independent and objective guidance to the Board and Executive team on business development and ensure that the Board maintains compliance with the ‘Corporate governance in central government departments: Code of good practice’, and that personal compliance with the ‘Code of Conduct for Board Members of Public Bodies’ is maintained.

Organisation description

The Coal Authority is an Executive Non-Departmental Public Body that has an independent Chair and Board. It is responsible to the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

Regulation of appointment

This post is regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. For more information, please refer to the Commissioner’s website 

Application and selection process

How to apply

Your application is submitted in two parts.

Both parts must be submitted by 23:00 on 22 August 2022 in order for your application to be considered complete. Applications received after this date will not be considered. 

Part oneCV and Statement of Suitability

  • One document combining a two-page statement of suitability and two-page CV (no more than four sides of A4 in total). The key to a good application is to give the reader specific information about how you meet the criteria for appointment. Think about your knowledge, skills, experience and personal attributes, and take full advantage of the space available. Provide practical evidence that best demonstrates how you meet the essential criteria.
  • Save the document as ‘Surname, First initial – URN 582 – Coal Authority
  • Send to Kitty Doherty at with URN 582 – Coal Authority in the subject heading.

Part twoDiversity Monitoring and Conflict of Interest Form. 

Overview of the application process

Public appointments are made on merit following a fair and open competition process which is conducted in accordance with the Governance Code for Public Appointments. We will deal with your application as quickly as possible and will keep you informed at key stages. We aim to conclude the appointment process within three months of the deadline for applications – this is in accordance with the Governance Code.

The assessment process

  1. Ministers are responsible and accountable to Parliament for the public appointments made within their department. As a result, they must be consulted at every stage of the appointments process.

  2. An Advisory Assessment Panel (“Panel”) is appointed by Ministers to assist them in their decision making. The role of the Panel is to decide, objectively, which candidates meet the eligibility criteria for the role.

  3. At the shortlisting meeting the Panel will assess applications against the eligibility criteria and decide which candidates should be recommended for interview. Ministers will then be consulted on the Panel’s recommended shortlist.

  4. Once the shortlist has been agreed by Ministers, you will be advised (by e-mail) whether you have been shortlisted. Those shortlisted will be invited to an interview.

  5. The Panel will meet again to interview candidates and determine who is appointable to the role. The names of all appointable candidates are provided to Ministers. It is then for Ministers to determine merit and decide who should be appointed. In some circumstances, Ministers may choose not to appoint any candidates and re-run the competition.

  6. The Panel’s recommendations will be provided to Ministers in a report which details the assessment method used and the outcome of each interview. They will then be asked to agree on the candidate(s) who should be appointed.

  7. Once the decision on the appointment has been made, interviewed candidates will be advised of the outcome of their application. Successful candidates will be issued with their Terms & Conditions and a letter of appointment should they agree to take up the position.

Advisory Assessment Panel (AAP)

Advisory Panel:
  • Panel Chair and BEIS Representative: Jeremy Cousins 
  • Representative of Organisation: Jeff Halliwell (Chair of the Coal Authority) 
  • Independent Panel Member: Laurie Benson, Former Global Media Executive 
Advisory Assessment Panels (AAP) are chosen by ministers to assist them in their decision-making. These include a departmental official and an independent member. For competitions recruiting non-executive members of a board (apart from the Chair), the panel will usually include a representative from the public body concerned.
AAP’s perform a number of functions, including agreeing an assessment strategy with ministers, undertaking sifting, carrying out interviews in line with the advertised criteria and deciding objectively who meets the published selection criteria for the role before recommending to ministers which candidates they find appointable. It is then for the minister to decide who to appoint to the role.

Eligibility criteria

In general, you should have the right to work in the UK to be eligible to apply for a public appointment.

There are a small number of specialist roles that are not open to non-British citizens. Any nationality requirements will be specified in the vacancy details.

The Government expects all holders of public office to work to the highest personal and professional standards. 

You cannot be considered for a public appointment if:

  • you are disqualified from acting as a company director  (under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986);

  • have an unspent conviction on your criminal record;

  • your estate has been sequestrated in Scotland or you enter into a debt arrangement programme under Part 1 of the Debt Arrangement and Attachment (Scotland) Act 2002 (asp 17) as the debtor or have, under Scots law, granted a trust deed for creditors.

When you apply, you should declare if:

  • you are, or have been, bankrupt or you have made an arrangement with a creditor at any point, including the dates of this. 

  • you are subject to a current police investigation.

You must inform the sponsor department if, during the application process, your circumstances change in respect of any of the above points. 

When you apply you should also declare any relevant interests, highlighting any that you think may call into question your ability to properly discharge the responsibilities of the role you are applying for. You should also declare any other matters which may mean you may not be able to meet the requirements of the Code of Conduct of Board Members (see Outside interests and reputational issues section below)
If you need further advice, please contact

Security clearance

The successful candidate will be required to undertake Baseline Personnel Security Standard checks in line with the Civil Service guidelines. Additional Security Clearance may also be required for certain roles. However, where this applies, candidates will be notified during the appointment process. Further information on National Security Vetting can be found on the website here.

Additional information for candidates

Equality and diversity

We encourage applications from talented individuals from all backgrounds and across the whole of the United Kingdom. Boards of public bodies are most effective when they reflect the diversity of views of the society they serve and this is an important part of the Government’s levelling up agenda.
We collect data about applicants’ characteristics and backgrounds, including information about people’s educational and professional backgrounds, so that we can make sure we are attracting a broad range of people to these roles and that our selection processes are fair for everyone. Without this information, it makes it difficult to see if our outreach is working, if the application process is having an unfair impact on certain groups and whether changes are making a positive difference.
When you submit your application, your responses are collected by the Cabinet Office and the government department(s) managing your application. The data is used to produce management information about the diversity of applicants. You can select “prefer not to say” to any question you do not wish to answer. The information you provide will not be seen by the Advisory Assessment Panel who review applications against the advertised criteria and conduct interviews.

Disability confident

We are a member of the Government’s Disability Confident scheme. We use the Disability Confident scheme symbol, along with other like-minded employers, to show our commitment to good practice in employing people with a disability. The scheme helps recruit and retain disabled people. 
As part of implementing the scheme, we guarantee an interview for anyone with a disability whose application meets the minimum criteria for the role and who has asked that their application is considered under the scheme. Indicating that you wish your application to be considered under the scheme will in no way prejudice your application. By ‘minimum criteria,’ we mean that you must provide evidence which demonstrates that you meet the level of competence required under each of the essential criteria, as set out in the job-advert.
When you apply you will have the opportunity to select if you would like your application considered under this scheme.

Reasonable adjustments

Government departments are committed to making reasonable adjustments to make sure applicants with disabilities, physical or mental health conditions, or other needs are not substantially disadvantaged when applying for public appointments. This can include changing the recruitment process to enable people who wish to apply to do so.
Some examples of common changes are:
  • ensuring that application forms are available in different or accessible formats;
  • making adaptations to interview locations;
  • allowing candidates to present their skills and experience in a different way;
  • giving detailed information on the selection / interview process in advance to allow candidates time to prepare themselves;
  • allowing support workers, for example sign language interpreters;
  • making provision for support animals to attend.
When you apply you will have the opportunity to request reasonable adjustments to the application process.

Principles of public life

Holders of public office are expected to adhere to and uphold the Seven Principles of Public Life These are:

  1. SELFLESSNESS - Holders of public office should act solely in terms of the public interest. They should not do so in order to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves, their family or their friends;
  2. INTEGRITY - Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties;
  3. OBJECTIVITY - In carrying out public business, including making public appointments, awarding contracts, or recommending individuals for rewards and benefits, holders of public office should make choices on merit;
  4. ACCOUNTABILITY - Holders of public office are accountable for their decisions and actions to the public and must submit themselves to whatever scrutiny is appropriate to their office;
  5. OPENNESS - Holders of public office should be as open as possible about all the decisions and actions that they take. They should give reasons for their decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest clearly demands;
  6. HONESTY - Holders of public office have a duty to declare any private interests relating to their public duties and to take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest;
  7. LEADERSHIP - Holders of public office should promote and support these principles by leadership and example.

Code of conduct for board members

The Government expects all holders of public office to work to the highest personal and professional standards. In support of this, all non-executive board members of UK public bodies must abide by the principles set out in the Code of Conduct for Board Members of Public Bodies. The Code sets out the standards expected from those who serve on the boards of UK public bodies and will form part of your terms and conditions of appointment.

Management of outside interests and consideration of reputational issues

Holders of public office are expected to adhere and uphold the Seven Principles of Public Life and the Code of Conduct for Board Members of Public Bodies. Before you apply you should consider carefully: 
  • any outside interests that you may have, such as shares you may hold in a company providing services to government; 
  • any possible reputational issues arising from your past actions or or public statements that you have made; 
  • and/or - any political roles you hold or political campaigns you have supported; 
which may call into question your ability to do the role you are applying for.
You will need to answer relevant questions in relation to these points when making an application. Many conflicts of interest can be satisfactorily resolved and declaring a potential conflict does not prevent you from being interviewed. If you are shortlisted for an interview, the panel will discuss any potential conflicts with you during that interview, including any proposals you may have to mitigate them and record that in their advice to ministers. Alongside your own declaration, we will conduct appropriate checks, as part of which we will consider anything in the public domain related to your conduct or professional capacity. This may include searches of previous public statements and social media, blogs or any other publicly available information. The successful candidate(s) may be required to give up any conflicting interests and their other business and financial interests may be published in line with organisational policies. 
Details of declared political activity will be published when the appointment is announced, as required by the Governance Code (political activity is not a bar to appointment, but must be declared).

Status of appointment

You will not become a member of the Civil Service. You will not be subject to the provisions of employment law.

Appointment and tenure of office

Appointments are for the term set out in this advert, with the possibility of re-appointment for a further term, at the discretion of Ministers.  Any re-appointment is subject to satisfactory annual appraisals of performance during the first term in the post. If re-appointed, the total time served in post will not exceed more than two terms or serve in any one post for more than ten years

Remuneration, allowances and abatement

Remuneration for this role is treated as employment income and will be subject to tax and National Insurance contributions, both of which will be deducted at source under PAYE before you are paid
You can claim reimbursement for reasonable travel and subsistence costs necessarily incurred on official business however these payments are taxable as earnings and will be subject to tax and national insurance, both of which will be deducted at source under PAYE before you are paid. 

Pension and redundancy

This is an office holder appointment and does not attract any benefits under any Civil Service Pension Scheme. You will not be eligible for redundancy pay as you are not an employee. No other arrangements have been made for compensation upon termination because an office holder who is appointed for a limited duration would have no expectation of serving beyond that period.

Application feedback

We will notify you of the status of your application. We regret that due to the volume of applications received, we are only able to offer feedback to candidates who have been unsuccessful at the interview stage.

How to complain

We aim to process all applications as quickly as possible and to treat all applicants with courtesy.
Please contact the  public appointments team in the first instance if you would like to make a complaint regarding your application at
 They will acknowledge your complaint upon receipt and respond within 15 working days.

How to complain to Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments (OCPA)

If you are not content with the appointing department’s response you may wish to further complain to the Commissioner at information on how the Commissioner handles complaints can be found on the Commissioner for Public Appointments’ website

Contact details